Six generations and 2.8 million units later, the Vauxhall Astra is celebrating its 30th year in production this month.
The first Mk1 Astra rolled off the production line at Ellesmere Port in February 1980 and was Vauxhall’s first car to incorporate both front-wheel-drive and a transverse engine layout. In 1982, the Astra became the first Vauxhall ever to be offered with a diesel engine.
Sporting pedigree then followed with dominant spells in international motorsport, and the release of hot hatch derivatives including GTE, GSi and – the badge that brought hot hatch hoonery back into fashion.
Today, the Vauxhall Astra accounts for almost one in 20 of all vehicles registered in the UK, while , the most convincing iteration yet, is Britain’s best-selling UK-built car. Happy birthday, Vauxhall Astra. Here’s to the next 30 years…
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